STORRS, Conn. (December 14, 2007) - The University of Connecticut men's and women's swimming and diving teams are enjoying one of the best starts in their program history.
The men's team is currently 4-0 in dual meet competition and were winners of the Husky Invitational and the prestigious Terrapin Cup, the first time they have won this event.
Freshman newcomers Alex Davidson (Pointe-Claire, Que.) and Tomasz Sobek (Siemianowice Slaskie, Poland) have had an immediate impact. Davidson has set a team record of 1:48.96 in the 200 backstroke and is currently ranked second in the BIG EAST Conference in the 200 and third in the 100 backstroke (50.33). Sobek's new time of 2:01.38 in the 200 breaststroke ranks him third in the conference and also sets a new UConn school record. Also performing well for the Huskies are Chris Ferreira (Madison, Conn.), ranked third in the conference in the 50 free at 20.74, Frisk Driscoll (Westport, Conn.) ranked fourth in the conference in the 1650 at 15:50.29 and Adrian Astiz (Bethesda, Md.) and John Henry Dasinger (Madison, Miss.) ranked fifth and seventh in the Conference in the 100 fly at 49.82 and 49.95, respectively.
The women have a dual meet record of 4-2 and are also the winners of the Husky Invitational as well as the Terrapin Cup for the second time in their history. This is the first time UConn has won both the men's and women's titles at the Terrapin Cup.
Lisa Shelps (Quakertown, Pa.) has been extraordinary for the Huskies. She has set five individual UConn school records including the 50, 100 and 200 freestyle and the 200 and 400 IM. Three of those record swims are NCAA "B" cuts including the 1:49.42 in the 200 freestyle, (second in the conference), 2:01.73 in the 200 individual medley (first in the BIG EAST Conference) and 4:20.79 (second in the conference) in the 400 individual medley.
Also having an outstanding season for the Huskies is Courtney Haney (Mesa, Ariz.). She has posted career bests in the 100 and 200 breaststroke of 1:04.47 (sixth in the conference) and 2:15.16 (which will rank first in the conference). The 200 time is an NCAA "B" cut. Haney's 400 IM time of 4:26.52 is sixth best in the Conference. Haney's new best times come as a senior at UConn, only two years after successful shoulder surgery. Another Husky off to a great start is Sarah Kearns (Milford, Mass.) who is currently ranked first in the conference in the 1650 with a 16:56.34 and third in the conference in the 500 freestyle (4:56.61). Jordan Zarin (Rockville, Md.) ranks fourth in the conference in the 200 fly at 2:04.65 while in the 200 backstroke Cassie Peterson (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) ranks fourth in the at 2:03.09 and Audrey Prior (Lutz, Fla.) is sixth 2:03.79.
Nine swimmers have just returned from the USA Swimming Short Course National Championships where Sobek, Dasinger, Davidson, Shelps and Haney had great success, recording their personal best marks in a national level meet.
The team will next head to the Bahamas for a two week intensive training trip in January after the final exam period with an eye on preparing for an equally successful second part of the season including the BIG EAST Conference Championships.
The UConn divers are also off to a successful start and did particularly well at the Terrapin Cup.
On the men’s side, sophomore Stephen Ferreira (Madison, Conn.) finished first in the one-meter dive and third in the three-meter dive. Senior Michael Clifford (West Islip, N.Y.) was third in the three-meter.
Junior Liza Marianni (Cherry Hill, N.J.) was second in both the one-meter and three-meter dives, while senior Allison Coleman (New Canaan, Conn.) was third in the one-meter. Freshman Jessica Hovancik (Valatie, N.Y.) was fourth in the one-meter.
The final two home meets for the Huskies will be January 26th when the Huskies entertain University of Rhode Island and Drexel University, then "Senior Day" on February 2 when they host BIG EAST foe Georgetown and Merchant Marine Academy coached by former UConn Big East Champion Sean Tedesco. The final dual meet of the season is February 9 when they will travel to Yale. The BIG EAST Championships are February 20-23, 2008.